Members of Parliament on Human Rights Committee were on Tuesday dealt a blow when they were blocked from accessing a residential building in Kyengera that is said to be a safe house where people are illegally detained by various security agencies.
The safe house is adjacent to SESACCO factory and it has a number of surveillances Cameras all around. The house was revealed by torture victims who appeared before the Human Rights committee last week allege that they were abused from this place.
The committee headed by Jennifer Nantume left parliament earlier today to go and establish what is exactly done in various safe house in Kyengera, Nakasero, Kalanga, Nalukolongo where people are reportedly detained for days if not months without trial in courts of jurisdiction.
On reaching the alleged house, the MPs were denied access by Vincent Kalibbala, a guard on unidentified rank who implored them to seek clearance from the Director General of Internal Security Organisation (ISO), Col Frank Kaka Bagyenda.
“We wanted to find out where these safe houses are and whether people are tortured there. This was a committee decision. We decided to do a spot visit without informing where we were going.” Said the committee chairperson
“We have visited three places but for the two places, it’s absurd we weren’t allowed to access by the soldiers we found. I can’t say we have seen people being tortured because we were denied entrance.” She said
Appearing before the committee Last week, the minister of security Gen Elly Tumwine, admitted to having a number of safe houses however MPs have to access them with a clearance from relevant security officers even though speaker Rebecca Kadaga had directed them to go to the said safe houses for clarity on human right abuses.
The minister was later tasked to explain where security agencies get powers to operate safe houses in the country, a question he failed to answer. Kawempe north MP Latiff Ssebaggala later tabled a list of 60 people detained in said safe house.